Thursday, April 24, 2014

Easter, Flowers wild and domesticated and loosing Tom

 Busy when spring comes we get going after our extra long snowy winter. Gardens perk up and the trees start to flower and Easter gives us a chance to get together with family for good food and company. We visited my mother and brother in Virginia for a night and saw a pretty sunset, ate home made coconut cake among other goodies and enjoyed the great tulips, flowering dogwood and, redbud in the yard. Mom always decks the halls for the season...

 Keith had a nice piece in the third week of the Ikebana exhibition at the Bonsai Museum so we took a minute to go see the wild flowers over in the Fern Valley Forest of the Arboretum. Virginia Blue bells, white and red Trillium, Yellow Rue and Trout Lilies were all flowering and the fiddle heads of ferns were unfurling. A chance sighting of a ground hog in the hollow was a treat and a chance to try my new camera's zoom lens. I was over 100 feet away and got his head in my view finder. These woodland wild flowers bloom and vanish so quickly you have to race out to see them. Only blooming in the short window between warming spring weather and the leaves coming out on the trees. It's about 2-3 weeks window of glory that changes from day to day.

 This morning I found the chill after heat wave hasn't hurt anything in our garden and after a couple years of no flowers the ancient lilac has a few blooms which we have been hoping to see again. With spring came some sad news yesterday. My friend Tom Palmer gave up his struggle with HIV and Cancer after a very long battle last Sunday. The call was a surprise to me because sadly, I wasn't in touch with him very often after he began the treatments for cancer which are so debilitating that having visitors is difficult.
He was a great guy for so many reasons and I am proud have been one of his friends and supporters. We coped with AIDS or HIV and both nearly died back in the middle 1990s We both were artists who loved drawing and the figure. He came and drew with my male figure drawing group and even posed for us a few times with his great figure and handsome face and generous personality it was a delight to have him join the group. He inspired so many people in different ways and for me it was a mutual support for making more art and living life fully with our health difficulties. He was a big fan of my metro character sketches and photos of flowers, hostas leaves and more recently the quilts. What a rich feeling it is to have had his love in my life, my heart aches at the thought of this loss but I know I was very fortunate to have Tom Palmer as my friend.

Taken by one of Tom's close friend Michael Pipitone on the 1997 AIDS bicycle ride where we riders all hoped to get to know the handsome Water boy!

ten minute sketch of Tom from 1998 using reed pen and ink wash on toned paper 
2007 on a visit Tom takes a tour of my iMac, he's  showing off his big warm smile. 


smazoochie said...

I'm so sorry for your loss. Nature keeps renewing itself however we humans are feeling.
Be well.

Carla said...

I'm so sorry for your loss. My thoughts are with you.